Thursday, January 23, 2014

Reprint Heaven: This Is Your Universe

Try Not To Screw It Up
(From August, 2012)

(All photos © NASA/ESA)

NASA and the European Space Agency recently released some of the all-time greatest hits of the Hubble Space Telescope. TPM has posted a slideshow of many of these images (see it here). They're breathtaking; amazing. Stunning.

We live inside of all this -- but our perspectives aren't normally wide enough to take it all in. And the universe is, you know -- a lot to take in. As we stumble on into what I fear will be a Little Mitt presidency, and as the majority of Americans are forced to "feel the pain" of Little Paul Ryan's Austerity plans so that Our Lords and Masters can have a wonderful, comfortable life with vacations, servants and treats. They are, as they believe, 'Masters Of The Universe'.

But, not. So we should try for the larger perspective, and keep images like these in mind -- because I'm greatly afraid that the fix is in, Boyz 'n Girls. Herr Obama had his opportunity -- and in his desire to play fair and become the Great Conciliator, was knocked down and curb-stomped by the Rethugs because that's all they understand or know how to do -- that, and buying or fixing elections. And my sense is they're about to do just that.

But even if that's not what comes to pass, and Obama manages to hold on by his fingerprints -- the perspective is the same. The Universe doesn't recognize election cycles or nationalism or religious bigotry and violence. It simply exists, and it's very beautiful.

All the swirls and blobs of light in the exposure above are individual galaxies. Whole galaxies. Hopefully on at least one of them, there are life forms who have determined how to live without doing as relatively poor a job as we've done in the past 50,000 years, and particularly in the past 5,000.

MEHR: Saturday, August 25th; It was just announced on The New York Times online edition half an hour ago that Neil Armstrong, first human being to set foot on the surface of Earth's moon, passed away at age 92.

As The Great Curmudgeon says, I'm so old that I can remember watching Armstrong do it, on a black-and-white television in the long-ago, Tricky-Dick, Vietnam war, rock-and-roll summer of 1969.

Now he knows what we do not. Sail on, Neil.


  1. spouse and self are about half-way through watching alex filippenko's video astronomy course - your local library might have it - THIS is the golden age of astronomy, right now

    1. I agree. Why as a species we aren't doing more to move off the Earth is as astounding as any of the photos...


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